Vacate the Chair

Nancy Pelosi has announced that she knows the path she is on, and it’s become clear to most progressives that she is leading her party down the path of failure in 2020 and very possible near-term extinction. Pelosi, in fleeing from principle in favor of political miscalculation, is risking the moral failure of the Democratic party whose only distinguishing feature from the Republicans is their moral stance. From the side, it’s looking more and more like the Democrats, along with much of our constitutional system, will not survive the Trump/Pelosi dinosaur epoch.

The issue the Democratic party faces now is how to escape from Nancy Pelosi’s failed leadership before the party falls over the cliff she is leading them toward.

That got me wondering about the process that the party could use to remove the Speaker. In constitutional parlance, that’s accomplished by a motion to “vacate the chair.”

But, get this, folks. It turns out, by a total coincidence and unintentional twist of fate, that Nancy Pelosi, as soon as she became Speaker for the second time this January, changed the rules so that it is harder, now, to remove the Speaker by the constitutional method of “a motion to vacate the chair.” Notice that the new rules, designed by the Democrats, are based on the Two-Party system, which is not part of the constitution at all. Phrases like “the majority party” do not occur in the Constitution, which in fact does not mention political parties at all.

It looks like a real mutiny is going to be needed, if Progressive Democrats, and any Democrats who care about the future of their party and their country, are going to break away from the bankrupt conservative, dinosaur thinking of Nancy Pelosi.

Because… say it with me, now… “Dinosaur thinkin’ leads to extinction!”

With the election of Nancy Pelosi as Speaker (again), new rules have been adopted. Previously, one congressperson could call for a vote on the Speaker.
Now, it takes a majority of the majority party (e.g., at least 1/4 of the House; more than half the Democrats, regardless of Republicans) to call for reconsideration of the speaker.

Democrats are also proposing to get rid of the “motion to vacate the chair” rule, which allows any member of Congress propose the speaker be removed. House Freedom Caucus Chair Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) used this to try to get rid of former House Speaker John Boehner in 2013, and Democrats don’t want to risk conservatives trying the same thing with likely incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
“That threat really disrupts the will of the majority,” Gottheimer said.

He might as well have said, “the tyranny of the majority.”

So, Nancy Pelosi has taken away the only real tool that Nadler has to chip away at a stone-walling Trump Bunker– Impeachment. Nadler knows that a formal Impeachment Inquiry is the only weapon he has to resist the criminal Trump regime. He’d better use it soon, or he’s gonna lose it, baby.

A third framing, which we address here, is a more practical one: whether, for the purposes of carrying out further investigation, the House’s hand would be strengthened significantly if it initiated impeachment proceedings. A May 15 letter from White House Counsel Pat Cipollone to Jerrold Nadler, chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary, brings this question into stark relief. The 12-page letter states, in essence, that the White House will not be providing any documents or information requested by the committee as part of an investigation announced on March 4 “into the alleged obstruction of justice, public corruption, and other abuses of power by President Trump, his associates, and members of his Administration.” In its response, the White House outlines a host of political and legal arguments, relying heavily on the premise that Congress has no “legitimate legislative purpose” for requesting the materials. This sweeping repudiation of Congress’s oversight powers brings into stark relief the question of whether there are procedural advantages in pursuing the same information and lines of inquiry under the banner of impeachment proceedings.

Looks like Nadler is getting some progressive pressure on him. I think he’s almost ready to mutiny against the minion role Pelosi has put him in, to save his job, if nothing else. Which Side Are You On, Jerry Nadler?

And more Dems are joining the rebellion against Pelosi.

And while the nearly 60 House Democrats publicly supportive of impeachment is still only about a quarter of the 235-member caucus, Huffman said he’s heard privately from colleagues who are more are on board than they’re letting on.
“I know the number’s higher,” Huffman said. “But many members don’t want to get ahead of leadership. And so that’s the delicate process that is underway.”

You know, we independents are the biggest party of all.

Need a little more for brunch this morning? What can I offer you?

Do you need more on Trump’s crimes?

Do you need more on why Pelosi is stuck in Dinosaur thinking?

Pelosi’s claim that “it would be very divisive in the country” can only be considered a bad joke. The country is already divided, perhaps to an extent not seen since the Civil War. The question isn’t whether Democrats are going to divide the public, but whether they’re going to inform and educate it, to the extent that is possible.

Dang, I don’t think I could say that better myself!

I keep hearing the talking point phrase RawStory uses here– “slow-walking”– in regard to Pelosi’s strategy against Trump. Sorry, folks. In Pelosi’s case it’s actually called “sleep-walking”. She’s sleeping-walking on the path to political extinction. And if Trump wins in 2020 because of her failed leadership, she may have walked us all over the metaphorical cliff into literal extinction.

Do you need more from the climate-denier-in-chief on why he is a danger to our world?

Do you need to more on climate change now, not later? There’s an early melt season in Greenland…

… and an early fire season starting up in California.

But, don’t panic, folks. Hope always cleanses the palette. There is movement in the right direction. My home state of Oregon is making some progress toward combating future climate catastrophe.

And if you like to end with the hopeful taste of a fruitful future, here’s a little Jay Inslee for you. On the Side.

And Jay Inslee standing up to the DNC, which is right back to its Machiavellian tricks. Oh, you sneaky Dems.

“I cannot rule out any other debate that would highlight both the necessity of defeating the climate crisis and calling for the candidates to step up to the plate,” Inslee said in an interview with Mother Jones on Thursday, while calling from the road in Seattle, Washington. “Sixty-second sound bites, which is all you’ll be able to get in a party debate, is grossly inadequate to the task.”
Inslee claimed the DNC is “trying to eliminate an opportunity to have a debate” by effectively “blacklisting candidates who want to have one.” 
“You have to understand how constricted the opportunity for a full discussion for this will be when we’re talking about mobilizing and rebuilding the entire economy to decarbonize over the next couple decades,” he said. “You can’t describe the mobilization of the economy in 60-second sound bites.”

Have I ever told you I’m a Climate Voter for 2020?

The American people need a debate on climate change. If the DNC won’t allow it, it’s time to leave the Democratic party, and start a new party that cares about the American people more than it does its own power.

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